Neurosphere Culture and Human Organotypic Model to Evaluate Brain Tumor Stem Cells

  • Hugo Guerrero-Cázares
  • Kaisorn L. Chaichana
  • Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 568)


The brain tumor stem cell (BTSC) hypothesis is based on the premise that there is a subpopulation of cells within tumors with tumorigenic and pluripotent properties. BTSC are believed to be responsible for both the initiation of brain tumors and their resistance to current therapeutic modalities. This new paradigm stresses the need for adequate techniques to culture and characterize this special population of cells. Furthermore, the use of different cell migration assays offers the possibility to evaluate the processes involved in glioma metastasis. In this chapter, we summarize a method to culture, analyze the cellular characteristics, and study the invasion of BTSCs using a neurosphere assay, cryostat sectioning, and human organotypic brain cortex migration assay, respectively.

Key words

Brain tumor stem cells Neurospheres Human organotypic cultures GBM Cell migration 



The authors would like to thank Ms. Alyssa Choi for her contri-butions to the neurosphere-staining technique and Mr. Frank Attenello and Ms. Grettel Zamora-Berridi for their help with the organotypic culture injections. This work was supported by NIH K08NS055851, Children’s Cancer Foundation, and the American Society of Clinical Oncology.


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Copyright information

© Humana Press, a part of Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hugo Guerrero-Cázares
    • 1
  • Kaisorn L. Chaichana
    • 1
  • Alfredo Quiñones-Hinojosa
    • 1
  1. 1.Brain Tumor Stem Cell Laboratory, Department of NeurosurgeryJohns Hopkins School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA

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